As a result of the ongoing and latest death and accidents on the long-since outdated, dangerous urban, Caltrains racingup the Peninsula only a few feet from people, kids, stray pets, wildlife et al, this Comment was posted on the Palo Alto Patch today:
"Caltrain is outdated, dangerous at-grade, and a disjointed rail system in the region that ought to be phased out to be replaced by BART over the next 10 years...in time for 2022, BART's 50th birthday, perhaps. When BART circles the Bay to compete effectively with "cars" in a one-seat transit solution to get to Bay Area major Universities, downtowns, Sports and event venues, airports and interregional transit hubs, and the burgeoning literally millions of square footage of NEW construction in the Peninsula that sucks motorists over from the East Bay with no transfer-less high capacity, safe, redundant transit option, such as motorists have with I80-I680-I280 and I80 I880-US101 1-seat loops around the Bay.
Electrified, grade-separated, fast, sleek, BART is planned to S.C. University now...leaving only 28 miles to study, fund, build to close the BARTAROUNDTHEBAY (my blog) (BAB) gap over time. The ~$5Billion planned to perfume the Caltrain pig needs to be redirected to BART BAB.
Ironically, some Peninsula cities suffer more Caltrain deaths than illegal gun use deaths each year, in fact, 190 dead by Caltrain since 1/1/1995, 30 since 1/1/2011, 12 last year, and 1 already this year, per Bay News sources.
Why is this Caltrain urban slaughter, including easy suicides, tolerated with this incredibly dangerous outdated train literally in our midst? Is it because we, in Silicon Valley, the land of "Creative Destruction" and Innovation have "always done it (Caltrain passenger rail) this way" ... since the 1863 trackway was first laid in the then very rural area, now increasingly densely populated and urbanized Let's fight for BAB (with or w/o HSR) by encouraging BART Around The Bay with legislators, environmental groups and those concerned about the safety of this children, especially those who are toddlers today, but will become suicide-susceptible teenagers. Note: for environmentalists and Save The Bay interests, The Dumbarton Rail (DR) across the SF Bay will no longer be needed. BART Around The Bay (BAB) will serve the same communities as DR--more safely (for wildlife and humans) than a surface commuter rail setup, and, the DR rail pylons in the Don Edwards Wildlife Refuge of lower S.F. Bay can finally be removed, restoring that part of the Bay to its natural state--as it was before 1910 when the original DR bridge was built!
Let's get real trainsit moving around the Bay, as called for by recent Joint Venture Silicon Valley Index that noted that 17 Bay Area Transit agencies need to be consolidated....here is one that is a "win-win", but we need leadership that can overcome special interest (read: current Democrat machine monopolistic hegemony of thought) that benefit from the deadly, inefficient, "always done it this way" behavior.